harm

noun
\ ˈhärm How to pronounce harm (audio) \

Definition of harm

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : physical or mental damage : injury the amount of harm sustained by the boat during the storm
2 : mischief, hurt I meant you no harm.

harm

verb
harmed; harming; harms

Definition of harm (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to damage or injure physically or mentally : to cause harm (see harm entry 1) to No animals were harmed in the making of the film. the national interest … was gravely harmed by this attack— Elmer Davis

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Other Words from harm

Verb

harmer noun

Synonyms for harm

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

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Choose the Right Synonym for harm

Verb

injure, harm, hurt, damage, impair, mar mean to affect injuriously. injure implies the inflicting of anything detrimental to one's looks, comfort, health, or success. badly injured in an accident harm often stresses the inflicting of pain, suffering, or loss. careful not to harm the animals hurt implies inflicting a wound to the body or to the feelings. hurt by their callous remarks damage suggests injury that lowers value or impairs usefulness. a table damaged in shipping impair suggests a making less complete or efficient by deterioration or diminution. years of smoking had impaired his health mar applies to injury that spoils perfection (as of a surface) or causes disfigurement. the text is marred by many typos

Noun

harm, injury, and damage mean an act that causes loss or pain. harm can be used of anything that causes suffering or loss. The frost did great harm to the crops. injury is likely to be used of something that has as a result the loss of health or success. She suffered an injury to the eyes. damage stresses the idea of loss (as of value or fitness). The fire caused much damage to the furniture.

Examples of harm in a Sentence

Noun They threatened him with bodily harm. The scandal has done irreparable harm to his reputation. She'll do anything to protect her children from harm. They have suffered serious physical harm. These new regulations could cause lasting harm to small businesses. Verb He would never intentionally harm his children. chemicals that could harm the environment The scandal has seriously harmed his reputation.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Honn was charged with kidnapping, aggravated rape, and assault and battery causing serious bodily harm. BostonGlobe.com, "A death investigation is underway in Lowell, where a man in his 50s died during a violent home invasion Monday afternoon in which a woman was also attacked and held against her will, officials said.," 17 Sep. 2019 Political leaders urging residents to stay out of harm’s way. The Christian Science Monitor, "Mountain climbing with Spirit," 30 Aug. 2019 He has been charged with murder, aggravated battery on a person 65 or older, and arson causing great bodily harm. Andrew Boryga, sun-sentinel.com, "911 call released in deadly attack on Boca Raton woman: ‘I heard a lot of screaming’," 21 Aug. 2019 Arrest records from Sunday showed a 24-year-old man was arrested Saturday by the CHP on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter and two counts of driving under the influence causing great bodily harm. Alex Riggins, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Motorcyclist killed in suspected DUI crash in Fallbrook identified," 20 Aug. 2019 Lots of behaviors and environmental factors can trigger blood vessels to constrict, without causing harm. Sara Harrison, WIRED, "Vaping May Harm Your Blood Flow—Even Without Nicotine," 20 Aug. 2019 The city also argued that the denial of the ordinance causes harm to the city which incurred costs to implement it, and the public. Hayat Norimine, Dallas News, "Dallas city attorney responds to paid sick leave lawsuit, wants new judge in case," 14 Aug. 2019 More and more people are asking questions about the potential harm in flavored e-cigarettes, especially as more and more teenagers take a puff and an alarming number of people stop taking a breath. Rick Hurd, The Mercury News, "The Vaping Crisis: Local health officials speak out against e-cigarettes," 12 Sep. 2019 The harm that the GBRA is going to present can occur if one or both dams have a catastrophic failure. Diego Mendoza-moyers, ExpressNews.com, "Residents seek legal fight with GBRA to save lakes," 24 Aug. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb And that will impact — and could harm — a vital economic driver in Michigan. Keith Matheny, Freep.com, "Climate change transforming where fish in the Great Lakes region live," 16 Sep. 2019 Emissions are just one way fashion can harm the environment, but a significant one. Marc Bain, Quartzy, "Is carbon-neutrality fashion’s next runway trend?," 12 Sep. 2019 Such conflict can harm companies, too, says Frederick Morgeson, a business and management expert at Michigan State University in East Lansing. Chris Woolston, Quartz at Work, "How to deal with an abusive boss," 29 Aug. 2019 According to police, the two men ran into the store, threatening to harm the store employees and demanding cash from the register, police said. Michelle Iracheta, Houston Chronicle, "Suspects in cell phone store robberies at large, considered 'extremely aggressive,' police say," 28 Aug. 2019 Smith said the goal is to provide early intervention to avoid the risk of children being harmed or neglected. Ramona Sentinel, "Host families needed to provide safety net for children," 27 June 2019 Sustainability certifications permit the use of Roundup, along with neonicotinoid pesticides, which have been shown to harm bee populations. Esther Mobley, SFChronicle.com, "Nearly all Sonoma County vineyards are certified sustainable," 12 Sep. 2019 Williams was the defensive coordinator for the New Orleans Saints when the team was investigated for the Bountygate scandal, in which the NFL found that Williams had created incentives for his players to harm opposing players. Lorenzo Reyes, USA TODAY, "Odell Beckham Jr. claims Jets DC Gregg Williams once told players to 'take me out' of game," 12 Sep. 2019 Police determined there is no indication that the man intended to harm students or staff, Ertl said. Bob Dohr, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Man wearing construction vest gains unauthorized access into Lincoln Elementary in Wauwatosa during school day," 11 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'harm.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of harm

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for harm

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Old English hearm; akin to Old High German harm injury, Old Church Slavonic sramŭ shame

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Statistics for harm

Last Updated

25 Oct 2019

Time Traveler for harm

The first known use of harm was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for harm

harm

noun
How to pronounce harm (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of harm

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: physical or mental damage or injury : something that causes someone or something to be hurt, broken, made less valuable or successful, etc.

harm

verb

English Language Learners Definition of harm (Entry 2 of 2)

: to cause hurt, injury, or damage to (someone or something) : to cause harm to (someone or something)

harm

noun
\ ˈhärm How to pronounce harm (audio) \

Kids Definition of harm

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: physical or mental damage : injury The storm did little harm to the sheltered beach.

harm

verb
harmed; harming

Kids Definition of harm (Entry 2 of 2)

: to cause hurt, injury, or damage to Too much sun can harm your skin.

harm

noun

Legal Definition of harm

: loss of or damage to a person's right, property, or physical or mental well-being : injury

Other Words from harm

harm transitive verb

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More from Merriam-Webster on harm

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for harm

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with harm

Spanish Central: Translation of harm

Nglish: Translation of harm for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of harm for Arabic Speakers

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